There’s now more competition in the jobs market than ever – but it’s employers, not just candidates, who are competing to stand out from the crowd.
June 2018 saw a record low number of applications per vacancy in the UK (Source: Personnel Today), providing proof if any were needed, that it’s a candidate-centric market.
It’s clear that employers can no longer take their pick of the top talent – rather, the top talent has to choose you. And that means building an employer brand that the best candidates want to work for…
Salaries and incentive schemes will always have a key role to play in attracting new hires. But increasingly, it’s the less tangible aspects of your offer that really make the difference – things like your company culture, values and your social outlook.
Employers, therefore, need to work hard to define what it is they really offer to candidates, building a desirable employer brand around an EVP (Employee Value Proposition) and communicating it clearly and consistently across a range of channels.
That’s where the use of technology comes in – providing not only a platform to build and market your employer brand, but also potentially forming a key part of your EVP itself.
After all, today’s mostly-millennial candidates want to engage with forward-thinking digital businesses, so positioning yourself as a tech-savvy employer could be a crucial factor in their ultimate destination.
Here are a few ways you can leverage the digital age to build and market your employer brand…
For many businesses, online recruitment means a paragraph or two on your company website and ad-hoc adverts on the well-known jobs boards. But is that sufficient to help you differentiate in your market?
A careers page tucked away on a predominantly customer-facing website could suggest to potential employees that they are something of an afterthought – whereas a fully fledged careers site shows the value you place on your people.
A careers website also gives you a perfect platform to showcase your EVP in full. Use it to share real stories from your employees and give candidates a glimpse into what life is like in your organisation – promoting your philosophies as an employer, but backing it up with insights from those who once stood in the candidate’s shoes.
Of course, your website is also an ideal opportunity to flex your digital muscles and impress potential new hires with a slick and streamlined application process. Today’s candidates expect a modern, mobile-friendly online application experience, so this will certainly tick some important boxes.
Consider customised landing pages too, to speak directly to different segments of your target audience, or to focus on specific roles.
2 Social media campaigns
By opening up a two-way conversation with your followers, social media channels make the perfect place to build your employer brand.
The likes of LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter are ideal engagement tools for establishing long-term relationships with the top talent of tomorrow – while also providing platforms for promoting your short-term recruitment drives.
Relatively newfound measurability makes social media even more powerful, with the likes of Twitter’s own analytics dashboard and a range of other third-party suites now available to help you analyse the relevance and appeal of your content.
3 Email marketing
Email marketing might not be new, but it still represents one of the best ways to provide personalised, tailored brand messages to your target audience.
Used in conjunction with well-segmented data, email marketing allows you to target specific groups of people with bespoke content that speaks directly to them – encouraging them to view you as an employer who shares and understands their values.
Similarly, when you have specific positions to fill, you’ll be able to target the right people for the role, rather than sending a one-size-fits-all job alert to everyone in your database.
Of course, it isn’t just potential candidates that have to buy into your employer brand – it’s also the talent you already have. If you want to keep hold of your best people, you’ll need to deliver on your promises across all stages of the employee lifecycle.
An employer brand isn’t just a recruitment strategy. It has to accurately reflect the values on which your business is based. If you’ve positioned yourself as a forward-thinking, tech-savvy employer, then that’s the experience you’ll need to deliver consistently.
There’s no shortage of ways to leverage technology to improve the employee experience, but your HR system should do much of the heavy-lifting for you. Not only should it enable you to reinforce your brand messages, but it should also improve employee engagement and productivity.
Mood-gauging ‘Pulse’ surveys are another way to engage employees, while internal social sharing platforms can help you deliver on values of collaboration and community.
Ultimately, if your employer brand aligns with both your organisational culture and real-life employee experience, great things can start to happen. Cost per hire comes down thanks to more accurate, effective recruitment, while your new hires quickly become engaged and enthused brand advocates – therefore contributing more quickly to your business.
In today’s employment market, it’s no longer a case of applicants competing for jobs, it’s jobs competing for applicants. Employers everywhere are really having to up their game to attract the best talent, and the development of a strong employer brand is an absolute must.
While technology is only a part of this process, it will continue to become a critical enabler in building your employer brand, especially as more and more tech-savvy millennials enter the workplace.